Gingerbread is most often thought of as a European Christmas treat but it was actually an Armenian monk who introduced it to the continent over one thousand years ago.
In 991 archbishop Gregory Markar traveled from Nicopolis, Turkey to Gâtinais, France after being chased out by the Persian Army. Gregory became a hermit, living close to the Saint Martin-le-Seul church in Baudrevilliers, which had been abandoned by Vertou monks. He ate sparingly and fasted frequently. He became a popular holy man and offered hospitality to his followers, “finishing the meal with a cake that he made himself, according to a recipe from his country, and comprising of honey and spices, in the fashion of his far away homeland in Armenia.”
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